Now that we are in the Christmas season, this is something that I have been thinking about.  Christmas starts earlier and earlier every year.  It was the beginning of November when I started hearing Christmas music and seeing the decorations go up.  People were all too willing to get right past Thanksgiving.  Now, Thanksgiving is simply a break from the work week to do Christmas shopping.  I think we need to stop and take the holidays as they come.  It is important to stop for Thanksgiving and be thankful for all that God has done.  I think observing Thanksgiving also helps us to orient our thoughts and ourselves to Christmas.  It helps focus on why we are so thankful for Christmas.  With all the focus on shopping, I do find myself forgetting why I am so thankful for Christmas.  Sometimes we can even lose this in our churches.  I love the idea of churches doing advent services during the Christmas season.  It helps to refocus everyone.  I also think this is a good opportunity to invite people in.  The churches look the best and we start the story from the beginning.  I think that’s so important.  So let’s try to stop and remember why we are thankful for Christmas.